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This package takes you up front and personal with the diverse and breathtaking wonders that Australia has to offer. Journey to the Red Centre to see Uluru (Ayers Rock), hike the outer rim of Kings Canyon and then visit cosmopolitan Sydney. While at Uluru, take in the limited time only Field of Light art installation by internationally acclaimed artist Bruce Munro. See 50,000 slender stems crowned with frosted-glass spheres that will bloom as darkness falls over Australia’s spiritual heartland. Pathways will draw viewers into the installation, which will come to life under a sky brilliant with stars. Continue on to Sydney and enjoy a cruise on stunning Sydney harbor and explore the city & Bondi Beach by small group tour.

Inclusions

  • Roundtrip International Economy Class Flights from Los Angeles (domestic US flights can be added at an additional cost)
  • Domestic airfare within Australia
  • 3 nights accommodation Ayers Rock at the 4* Desert Gardens Hotel - Garden View Room
  • Field of Light Star Pass
  • Uluru Morning Sunrise tour
  • Kings Canyon full day tour including your choice of hike
  • 3 nights accommodation Sydney at the 4* The Grace Hotel
  • Half day small group city sights tour of Sydney
  • Morning 2 hour small group cruise of Sydney Harbour
  • Sydney Opera House Tour
  • Seat in coach transfers at Ayers Rock & Sydney
  • All airport taxes & fuel surcharges

Itinerary 

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Day 1 - Depart US 
What makes Australia truly special is not just the accents, iconic destinations and the wildlife, but the warmth of its people. You’ll experience this warmth with Virgin Australia when you fly direct from LA to Sydney. Considering upgrading your flight? Consider premium economy from $700 per person additional each way or a life flat bed in business class from $2,000 each way for travel Monday - Thursday.

Day 2 - Cross International Date Line

Day 3 - Arrive Sydney, fly to Ayers Rock 
Depart Sydney for Ayers Rock and take the courtesy shuttle transfer on arrival to the Desert Gardens hotel - your base for three nights.

Uluru (Ayers Rock), in the heart of the Red Centre, has a desert climate - mostly dry, with brilliant blue skies all year. It is a World Heritage Area, managed jointly by the Aboriginal traditional owners and the Australian Nature Conservation Agency. You will spend two nights at the centrally Desert Gardens Hotel, Ayers Rock Resort. The resort is a short stroll to numerous lookouts, where you can view what is arguably Australia's best sunset, with the spectacular play of colors across the face of Uluru and the surrounding desert.

ACCOMMODATION - Magnificent ghost gums and flowering native shrubs are the setting for this hotel. Voyages Desert Gardens Hotel is centrally located to all resort and touring facilities and offers a range of accommodation, from shaded poolside rooms to deluxe rooms overlooking the desert. Relax in the comfort of your own private balcony or courtyard, or unwind in the pool, sipping cocktails from the Bunya bar. It is only a short stroll to the numerous lookouts, where you can view what is arguably one of the best sunsets, with the spectacular play of colors across the face of Uluru and the surrounding desert. Once the sun has set, dine at White Gums Restaurant and savor Australian native delicacies.

This evening enjoy sunset over Uluru & “The Field of Light”. The Field of Light Star Pass experience begins with a convenient pick-up from the Desert Gardens Hotel and transfer to the remote desert location with majestic views of Uluru. A knowledgeable host will provide you with insights and background to the art installation. You are welcomed at a raised viewing area from which you can watch as the last sun rays hit Uluru as the sun slowly sets behind you. As darkness gradually falls and the colored lights of the glass spheres come to life you are invited to walk through and interact with Field of Light. You are then welcomed back at the raised viewing area 30 minutes prior to departure for sparkling wine and canaps whilst viewing the illuminated installation in the darkness.

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Day 4 - Ayers Rock - Uluru Sunrise Tour 
This morning you will be picked up from the Desert Gardens Hotel for your small group Uluru Highlights sunrise tour. Travel towards Uluru where its vast shape rises from the sand dunes in the early dawn light highlighting its presence in this country. Stop at a special location to watch the sun rise over this amazing monolith and enjoy a picnic breakfast. Travel to Mutitjulu Waterhole where you will learn the Creation stories of Liru (poisonous snake) and Kuniya (python). Then drive around the base of Uluru hearing the cultural stories of the Mala people before returning to the resort.

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This afternoon consider adding an afternoon camel ride through the desert (additional cost applies)
Catch the camel train and ride the good-natured camels for 45 minutes through beautiful sand dune country with Uluru and Kata Tjuta as your stunning backdrop. The knowledgeable cameleer describes the landscape around you on your ride. Back at the farm explore the camel museum and learn about the importance of camels to the history of the Red Centre

This evening consider the Sounds of Silence Dinner (additional cost applies)
Entered into the Australian Tourism Hall of Fame, Sounds of Silence offers the best of the Red Centre distilled into four magical hours. An unforgettable evening, eating beautifully prepared food under the sparkling outback sky. The journey begins on a lone sand dune. A meandering path takes participants to an uninterrupted, 360 degree view of this vast landscape. In front is the fabled Uluru; behind are the domes of Kata Tjuta and, possibly the most spectacular sunset you have ever seen. Here enjoy sparkling wine and a selection of delectable canapes. As the sun sets in a blaze of reds and oranges, and well into the starlit night, feast on a gourmet barbecue buffet of authentic Australian delicacies including barramundi, kangaroo, emu, crocodile, bush salads and classic desserts, complemented by some of Australia's finest wines. Attention then turns to some of the world's best stargazing, as the resident astronomer takes diners on an unforgettable tour of the spectacular southern night sky. As dinner winds down, select from a choice of tea, coffee or port. In winter, guests gather around a campfire to savour a special treat of hot mulled wine.

Day 5 - Uluru - Kings Canyon & Outback Panoramas
An AAT Kings coach will pick you up from your hotel to commence a full day Kings Canyon and Outback Panorama tour. Travel from Ayers Rock Resort to Kings Canyon, stopping for breakfast at Kings Creek Station along the way. Make the rocky climb to the rim of the canyon for marvelous views of Watarrka National Park. Follow the rim of the canyon stopping to look down into the canyon gorge at lookout points. Time permitting, stop at the green oasis of the 'Garden of Eden.' The circuit walk takes approximately three hours to complete and is rocky and steep in parts. It is recommended for those with a good level of fitness. Alternatively, an easier and shorter walk to explore the boulder strewn canyon floor is available. Arrive at Kings Canyon Resort and enjoy a relaxed lunch in the early afternoon. After an exciting, fun-filled day of hiking and sightseeing in the rugged terrain of Watarrka National Park, relax in the comfort of a coach transfer returning to Ayers Rock.

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Day 6 - Ayers Rock - Sydney
This afternoon, fly to Sydney. Blessed with a temperate climate, Sydney is Australia’s favorite city with the world’s most beautiful harbor. The harbor provides a playground for jet boating, sailing, swimming, harbor scenic flights, dining, fishing, climbing the harbor bridge and sightseeing at the Opera House. Take a stroll through The Rocks, the site of the first European settlement. Don’t miss The Rocks markets held every Saturday & Sunday. Be entertained with great street theatre and music while you browse for Australian arts & crafts. Circular Quay is the gateway to the harbor and the starting point for most of Sydney’s harbor cruises and passenger ferries. Familiarize yourself with the harbor by taking one of the many cruises on offer or jump on a passenger ferry to Taronga Zoo or Manly beach. Sydney’s shopping is second to none with its endless selection of boutiques, markets and malls. Unique Australian specialty shops reside at The Rocks and Darling harbor’s Shopping Centre and a visit to the Queen Victoria Building in the city center is a must. Dining out at one of the many fabulous harbor side restaurants is a must. Fresh produce, great views, inspiring chefs and a multicultural flavor turn a meal into a gastronomic delight.  Enjoy three nights at The Grace Sydney

ACCOMMODATION - Located in the heart of the Sydney CBD, The Grace Hotel is a beautifully restored showpiece of Neo Gothic architecture with Art Deco interiors.

Day 7 - Sydney
This morning you will be picked up from your hotel for your small group Panoramic Sydney Sights tour. Commence a morning Panoramic Sydney Sights tour. Visit the historic Rocks area (Old Town of Sydney) and hear of the early convict history. Enjoy magnificent views of the Opera House, see Sydney Harbour Bridge and the shopping heart of the city including the Queen Victoria Building and Sydney Tower. Visit Sydney's trendy district, Oxford Street and elegant Paddington with its terrace houses. Arrive at the famous beaches - see Tamarama, Bronte and stop at the Bondi beachfront to stroll and enjoy a morning coffee or tea (at own expense). See surfers, famous Aussie lifesavers and Sydney's most spectacular panoramic viewpoint. Return to Sydney via Sydney Heads lookout, Watsons Bay, Kings Cross & Mrs Macquaries Point for unsurpassed views of the Harbour Bridge & Opera House.

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Day 8 - Explore Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House
This morning, enjoy the company of a small group aboard a 52 foot motor yacht. Your captain and host will share the rich history of Sydney Harbour and its foreshore as you take in the sights of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House and the bays and coves of Sydney Harbour. Enjoy a light morning tea with coffee, tea, juice and water.

This afternoon, see inside the world's most recognizable 'sails' and experience this miracle of architecture and engineering. A work of art that came into existence against impossible odds to become one of the busiest performing arts centers in the world. Working with new, rich audio-visual components, where images are projected onto the fabric of the building, your guide will take you on an emotional journey, engrossing you in a story to rival any opera plot with its dramatic twists and turns. Some 1,500 performances, from opera to circus, rock and cabaret, are staged each year to audiences of around 1.5 million.

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Day 9 - Depart Sydney for Los Angeles
This morning you will be collected for your transfer to Sydney airport. Depart Sydney on your Virgin Australia flight back to Los Angeles.

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Travel Dates Costing (per person)*
1-30 April, 1-30 June 2017 $2,599
1-31 March, 1 July-30 September 2017 $2,699
1 October- 30 November 2017 $2,799

* Package price based on two people sharing a room, if only one person traveling add single occupancy supplement $650 (1-30 April, 1-30 June 2017 ), $750 (1-31 March, 1 July-30 September 2017), $850 (1 October- 30 November 2017)

 

Additional departure gateways & pricing

  • Add on airfares available from most major airports - Add $190 from San Francisco, Add $250 from Dallas, Seattle, Add $300 from NYC, Chicago, Houston, Denver, Minneapolis, Add $380 from Boston, Miami, Add $450 from Washington DC, Atlanta - ask an Aspire consultant for a quote from your local airport.

* Based on Monday through Thursday travel - ask an Aspire consultant for add-ons for travel Friday through Sunday

Optional Activities, Extensions or Add-Ons & pricing:

  • Upgrade to premium economy from $700 per person each way*
  • Upgrade to business class from $2,000 per person each way*
  • Can take the upgrade one way or round trip and combine premium/business classes on same ticket

* Based on Monday through Thursday travel - ask an Aspire consultant for the upgrade fee for travel Friday through Sunday

On Board Virgin Australia
Virgin Australia launched over a decade ago and instantly changed the way people fly. Today, Virgin Australia represents a new level of style, sophistication and professionalism. With constant innovation at the heart of everything they do, superior products and award-winning service set them apart and lets you enjoy a world-class experience on every flight.

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International Economy Class

An inclusive Economy Class experience when travelling on international long haul services. Economy guests receive complimentary food, beverages and in-flight entertainment. Economy Space+ enables you to speed through the airport and enjoy additional on-board benefits to standard Economy.

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International Premium

With more legroom than any other Australian airline, and an intimate cabin that enhances our award-winning service, you'll find Virgin Australia's new Premium experience on-board the Boeing 777 aircraft is a class apart from anything you have experienced before.

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'The Business'

Introducing "the Business", an exceptionally stylish, relaxing and refined way to fly on Virgin Australia's Boeing 777 aircraft. Stretch out in your cocoon-like private suite, or enjoy a drink with others at The Bar, enhanced with the unparalleled, award winning service Virgin Australia is famous for.

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Conditions

Package from pricing is based on double occupancy (2 people sharing a room) for travel Sunday - Wednesday 08 April – 30 November 2017 for purchase by 15 May 2017; $60 supplement applies each way for travel on Thursday to Saturdays. Ask an Aspire consultant for pricing for other travel dates. Add-on fares are available from other cities. Certain blackout dates apply on the accommodation and tour value add offers - check with your Aspire consultant. Seats are limited and may not be available on every flight. Hotels are subject to availability. All prices reflect a discount for purchases made by cash/wire transfer/check, please see terms and conditions for credit card payments. There are no discounts for payment made by credit cards. Cancellation penalties and other restrictions apply. A passport with extended validity past your travel dates and an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) is required to enter Australia; Aspire Down Under can issue your ETA for a processing fee of $25 per person. A copy of the picture page of your passport and payment for your ETA is required at the time of booking.